Forum Decorum – Get the Most Out of LSAC Forums

Students talk with an admissions representative at a fair

The law school recruitment season starts fast and furious with LSAC sponsored forums back to back from the end of September all the way through mid-November. Each forum is a great opportunity for students interested in learning more about law schools to get a lot of information in one fell swoop, but it can also be very overwhelming. On average, there are more than 150 law schools at each event throughout the country, which can lead to large crowds and some tight situations. But we’ve put together our top tips for how to navigate these large-scale events so that you can be effective in your research!

Take advantage of the workshops

At every forum, there are workshops scheduled throughout the day in conjunction with the law school fair. These workshops cover an array of topics that are directly related to the law school search and application process. These are the real deal for making sure that you know what to expect! Is it your first forum? Forum 101 is for you. Are you curious about financial aid in law school? Make sure you go to Financing a Legal Education! These presentations are a wealth of information for those just starting the search process.

Have a list of questions ready

There is nothing wrong with looking at schools not on your “list” – in fact, you ABSOLUTELY should do that, because you never know what school might be your best fit! But there’s nothing worse than waiting in line at a table to talk to a rep, getting up to the front and saying, “Can you tell me about your school?” Of course we can tell you about it, but what do you want to know? Have a few standard questions that are applicable across law schools to get the ball rolling, and maybe you’ll come up with a few follow-up questions in the course of the conversation!

Don’t expect a full conversation at the table

There are a LOT of people who attend these forum, which means there is likely to be a line of interested candidates at some of the schools you want to talk to. Don’t expect to have a 15-20 minute conversation about your specific situation with these representatives. Forums are the perfect place to start gathering research and following up later. We always welcome an email, phone call, or campus visit after we’ve met you on the road, but we have a lot of students to talk with and want to make sure everyone has a chance to get their questions answered!

Grab-and-Go

A lot of times, you may walk by the same table two, three, or four times over the course of an hour and it seems like the line is never getting shorter! There is nothing wrong with standing at the side of the table, grabbing some information, and maybe putting your L number down on the paper for that school. The key here is to make sure you grab the business card of the rep that is there so that you can follow up later! Occasionally, there won’t be a business card because the rep is an alum or a faculty member – make sure you do your research and follow up with the Admissions Office later to get any questions you have answered.

Think outside the list

We alluded to this already, but it’s smart to come into the forum with a list of schools you want to talk to. It’s also smart to think outside that list and talk with schools that maybe you’ve heard of but never considered, or maybe you’ve just never heard of! There is a law school for everyone, it’s just about finding your right fit. So take a stab outside of the box and your comfort zone by taking a quick second to talk with a rep at a school that’s maybe not on your list.

There are SO MANY other tips, but these are the top 5 from our perspective. Remember, forums are about learning and you might leave feeling a bit overwhelmed. Call or email the Admissions Offices at the schools your considering to follow up and hopefully ask some additional questions if you feel like you need help. You can find William & Mary Law at all of the forums this fall – make sure you keep up to date with our recruitment calendar to see if we’re coming to your area!

Aaaaaaaaand We’re Back!

Student studying in the library

It’s been a hot minute since we’ve been here, but we’re back and ready to roll with the new recruitment year for the Class of 2023! You may have seen that our application went live on September 1st, and we’re so excited to start reading your applications! If you haven’t even started to think about your application, though, this post is for you. Here are a few things that you’ll need to know before submitting your application to W&M Law for the Class of 2023.

Application Dates & Deadlines

While almost all of this information can be found on our website, it’s handy to have it all in one place here, too. There are two ways that you can apply to W&M Law.

  1. Regular Decision – Free to apply and open now!
    Application Closes: March 1
    Required Pieces: LSAT, Undergrad Transcripts, and 2 Letters of Recommendation sent through CAS; Personal Statement; Resume; Optional Addenda for LSAT/GPA/Why W&M Law/Diversity & Inclusion
    Last LSAT Accepted: January 2020
  2. Early Decision – Binding contract required for submission, free to apply and open now!
    Application Closes: January 15
    Required Pieces: Signed Early Decision contract; LSAT, Undergrad Transcripts, and 2 Letters of Recommendation sent through CAS; Personal Statement; Resume; Optional Addenda for LSAT/GPA/Why W&M Law/Diversity & Inclusion
    Last LSAT Accepted: November 2019

FAQs & Definitions

  1. Can I apply before I take my LSAT?
    Yes! There is a space on our application where you can indicate your plans to take a future LSAT, and we will wait to evaluate your application until we receive those scores. This includes those who have an LSAT on file already but plan to retake the LSAT. Remember, though, that all applications must be COMPLETED by the deadlines listed above for consideration, so don’t plan to take an LSAT after the application deadline!
  2. What does “binding” mean in the Early Decision application?
    When you apply Early Decision, you are stating that you will attend William & Mary Law if admitted – in short, you are bound to upholding that contract. The contract you sign states that you will withdraw all other applications you have submitted if you are admitted through the Early Decision application; this means that if you aren’t 100% sure that we’re you’re go-to pick, you should apply Regular Decision.
  3. Do I have to submit another application if I don’t get admitted Early Decision?
    No! Any student who applies Early Decision will still be considered for Regular Decision admission. What this means is that your application and all materials will still be valid for admission to the Class of 2023, but you will no longer be held to the Early Decision contract you signed, and can continue to consider other law schools once you’ve received your admission decision from William & Mary Law.
  4. Is the resume required?
    100%, absolutely, yes. You wouldn’t apply to a job without a resume, why would you apply to a professional school without one? And they are looked at, we promise you. So please don’t send us a list of things you did by academic year, or pages with 20 point font to make it look longer than it really is. Use the resources available to you at your undergraduate institution, or have a co-worker or supervisor advise you on your resume before you submit it.
  5. Can I take the February LSAT if I’m applying Regular Decision?
    No; January 2020 is the last LSAT score that we will accept for Regular Decision applications, so please plan accordingly. Like you, law schools don’t receive those scores until weeks after the exams take place, and so to allow for a full evaluation of all applications in a timely manner, a completed application, including LSAT scores, is required by the application deadline.
  6. I’m a splitter – can I get admitted to William & Mary Law? 
    The most loaded of all questions we get. When we receive your application, we’ll be able to give you a better idea! It’s a holistic review process for a reason; it depends on a number of things, and a lot of the other material required for your application can help, or hurt, your overall chances. We don’t have a chart that determines admissibility based solely on GPA and LSAT scores. If we did, our job would be a lot easier.
  7. When can I expect to hear a decision about my application?
    In short, it depends. We try really hard to make sure that everyone has a decision on their application 3-4 weeks after their application is complete. We can’t guarantee that timeline, though, because we don’t know what our application volume will look like yet! Also know that just because you’ve submitted your application doesn’t mean that it’s complete; we may be waiting on your CAS report because you haven’t taken the LSAT Writing yet, and so we don’t have your LSAT score. Those sorts of delays will delay your admission decision.